Lenten Programs and Events
Lent 2023 at St. Michael The Archangel Church
Lent is a time of preparation for Easter, calling Christians to reform their lives and to open their hearts to the special graces and blessings which God has promised to bestow upon the world.
All community members are invited to any of the events listed below. If you need more information about our Lenten programs, please call the rectory 518-792-5859.
Schedule of Parish Lent Events & Programs
ASH WEDNESDAY: February 22
We begin the season of Lent. Liturgies are as follows:
- 7:30 AM
- 12:10 Noon
- 8:30 AM
- 5:30 PM
NOTE: Ashes will be blessed and distributed at all four liturgies. Communion will only be distributed at the two Masses: 8:30 AM and 5:30 PM; and will NOT be distributed at the prayer services.
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Fasting (meaning eating less): Required of all Catholics age 18-59. Ash Wednesday and Good Friday, are both days of fast and abstinence. Fasting simply means that Catholics should eat less that is, limit themselves to just one full meal and two smaller meals, which are not equal to the main meal and no snacking between meals.
Abstinence (meaning not eating something): Catholics aged 14 and older are required to abstain from (not eat) meat (including beef, chicken, veal, lamb and pork) on Ash Wednesday, Good Friday and the Fridays of Lent as a sign of our penitence.
Easter Duty: The obligation for all Catholics to receive Holy Communion between the First Sunday of Lent (February 25/26) and Trinity Sunday (June 4).
Our hope is that the Faithful will receive the Holy Eucharist regularly during the 40 Day period of Lent and the Easter Season and regularly (weekly) throughout the year
At St. Michael’s Church, the Sacrament of Reconciliation (confession) is an integral part of our spiritual and sacramental life. Lent is an ideal time to experience God’s compassion and love in this Sacrament of tender healing.
Of course, all are welcome for reconciliation each Saturday at St. Michael’s Church from 3:00 to 3:45 PM in church, or anytime by appointment.
This year, the following days/times are scheduled for you to partake in the sacrament of Reconciliation:
- At St. Michael the Archangel Church, Wednesday, April 4 at 1 PM.
- Other parishes are planning the following services: Wednesday, March 22 at 7 PM at Our Lady of the Annunciation; and Tuesday, March 28 from 2 PM to 6 PM at St. Mary’s Church.
Lenten Simple Soup Suppers
We will again offer two evenings to gather together to share a simple soup supper during Lent. Folks are invited to stop in before the Friday evening Lenten Devotions to share a simple soup supper in the parish hall. There is no cost for the meals.
The suppers are planned for Friday, March 3, hosted by the Knights of Columbus, and Friday, March 17, hosted by the Rosary Altar Society.
The Soup Suppers will be offered on Friday from 4:30 PM until 6:30 PM (or when the food runs out) in the parish hall.
Please join the Parish Music Ministry at a beautiful and spiritual Tenebrae Service planned for Sunday, March 26, at 2 PM
Tenebrae recalls the last moments of Jesus’ life as he died upon the Cross. Sometimes it has been called “the Seven Last Words of Jesus.”
It is a beautiful and moving prayer service, using Scripture and music to help convey the depth of God’s gift that was accomplished by Jesus through his passion. It is a great way to more fully enter in the last part of Lent.
Our dedicated music ministry has been working hard to make this a special experience. I ask ALL households/families/parishioners to join us for our Tenebrae service. It will take only one hour and will be the best hours spent in your week!
Spiritual Enrichment Opportunities
DAY OF PRAYER & REFLECTION
Saturday, March 18 at 2:30 pm
Presented by Sister Eleanor Guerin, RSM
DAY OF PRAYER & REFLECTION
Wednesday, March 22 at 1:00 pm
Presented by Sister Julie Werner, RSM
THE EUCHARIST VIDEO SERIES
by Bishop Robert Barron
Five sessions offered in school meeting room
at 1:00 pm & 7:00 pm on Wednesdays, March 1, 8 and 15;
Thursday, March 23; and Wednesday, March 29.
John O’Brien will also offer two spiritual presentations in church at 6:30 pm on Thursday, March 2 — The Eucharist: Source and Summit; & Thursday, March 30 — Medjugorje: The True Message.
Lent 2022 Friday Devotions
We are offering traditional Lenten devotions every Friday, beginning February 24, throughout Lent.
Every Friday evening in Lent, the Blessed Sacrament (Jesus in the Eucharist) will be exposed in the church, and will remain so through the praying of the Rosary and the Stations of the Cross. The schedule is:
- Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament — Beginning at 6:00 PM until the conclusion of the Stations of the Cross
- 6:30 PM Rosary
- 7:00 PM Stations of the Cross (with benediction immediately afterward)
All in the parish are encouraged to take part in this during Lent for a more rewarding time with the Lord!
Holy Week 40-Hours Devotion
Beginning at 6:30 pm on Sunday, April 2 (Palm Sunday of the Lord’s Passion) until 12:00 noon Tuesday, April 4, the parish intends to hold the traditional Lenten ‘40 Hours Devotion’ of non-stop, ongoing Eucharistic Adoration.
In order to hold this event, every hour must be covered by one or more people, especially during the overnight hours! We encourge families, couples, students to come spend an hour with the Lord during this devotion.
The 40 Hours Devotion is a period of uninterrupted, continuous adoration and prayer before the Blessed Sacrament. The focus is solely on Jesus Christ our Lord in the Eucharist. It begins with the Rite of Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament which then remains exposed on the altar in a monstrance for the entire period of time as the faithful gather for prayer & adoration.
The period ‘40’ reminds us of the 40 hours Jesus was in the desert and also the time Jesus was in the Holy Sepulcher before His Resurrection. This is an awesome time of quiet prayer and reflection that all are invited to experience.
Affirming the Church’s belief in the Real Presence of Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament, Vatican Council II, as with all of the Popes, has upheld and strongly encouraged Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament. “Such devotion derives from the Mass and moves the faithful to sacramental and spiritual communion with our Lord.” (Lumen Gentium, 11)
40 Hours Devotion will conclude Tuesday, April 4 at 12:00 noon. Immediately afterward, we will have our parish’s Lenten penance service.
Lenten Almsgiving Opportunity: Operation Rice Bowl
We are again taking part in the Operation Rice Bowl effort from Catholic Relief Services. This is a great way to teach kids how to be generous and care for the poorest of the poor in destitute places. Be sure to take a Rice Bowl kit home and fill it during the Lenten season. Rice Bowls may be returned to church anytime from Palm Sunday (April 10) through the second Sunday of Easter, Divine Mercy Sunday (April 24).
Lenten Almsgiving Opportunity: Lent Poor Box Projects
Almsgiving is an important component of our Lenten discipline. An ancient rabbinic teaching says, “Greater is he that gives alms, than he who offers all sacrifices.” Almsgiving is listed first in the catalogue of good works. The Scriptures tell us that alms make up for sin and in the Gospels Jesus says that we always have the poor with us. Our parish has a “poor box” dedicated solely to help the needy, less fortunate and disadvantaged in our local area.
Your generous Lenten contributions made to the Poor Box in church will be designated for different area charities: the Moreau Community Center and St. Therese Mission Chapel Food Pantry. The alms you give help to relieve the plight of the needy and poor in our community. Remember the words of Jesus, “the poor you will always have with you…” Please be generous this Lent with your charity in support of the less fortunate. Thank you for your sacrificial love!